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The United Arab Emirates: A Study in Survival [Hardcover]

Christopher M. Davidson
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
RRP: 44.95
Price: 40.60 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

30 April 2005 Middle East in the International System
The United Arab Emirates has remained a mainstay of stability in an increasingly volatile Middle East, managing to maintain a traditional polity despite the impact of rapid modernization and globalization. This in-depth study explores the many contradictions that characterize the UAE and its position within the international system. Davidson first provides a detailed historical background, tracing the recent history of the lower Gulf region, the British involvement in the area, and the establishment of the federation of emirates. He then turns his attention to the UAE's seemingly anachronistic political structure and its socioeconomic development. His astute analysis highlights the UAE's achievements, as well as the problems that have persistently undermined its development objectives.

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The United Arab Emirates: A Study in Survival + Power and Politics in the Persian Gulf Monarchies + Abu Dhabi: Oil and Beyond
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 333 pages
  • Publisher: Lynne Rienner Publishers Inc (30 April 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158826274X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1588262745
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 22.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 718,197 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
This book corners the market in UAE studies in more than one way. It is the only comprehensive analysis of the history, politics and economic development (and their interaction) of the UAE that covers its whole development to date. It provides a wealth of factual information not available elsewhere. It provides a serious analysis drawing on the tools of political science and political economy. And it does all this in an accessible language. In other words, it is THE book on the UAE both for students/academics and for the wider public of businessmen, journalists and generaklly interested readers. Whether you are thinking of living or working in the UAE, interested in delving into the intricacies of political development in post-traditional polities, or curious about the possibilities and pitfalls of development in oil-rich economies, this book does the trick.

It combines a brief but well-researched history with a survey of societal characteristics and an in-depth analysis of how these polities have functioned and developed, and of how their coming together in the federation that is the UAE has been managed. The ways in which traditional socio-political mechanisms have been adapted to ensure stability are well laid out - wile at the same time the in-built limitations and 'pathologies' of the local variants of politcal-economic 'rentierism' are highlighted, explaining the contrast between these emirates' grand ambitions and their sometimes very limited realisation.

This is a fascinating book on a fascinating country.
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Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The UAE 1 Mar 2005
By Arthur Stevenson - Published on Amazon.com
The author has combined history with political science to make for something of a cutting edge book on one of the Gulf's most interesting countries. I just finished reading this, and being a veteran of the UAE for many years I found it to be very well researched with some extremely clever and original analysis, and in a completely different league to all previous books on the country.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Something missing... 9 Jan 2007
By Dr. Mervyn J. Morris - Published on Amazon.com
Overall I thought the book was very well put together and achieves what the author set out to achieve. Based on my knowledge (personal and professional) it is an accurate reflection on the UAE. However, two points I would like to make in relation to the book. First, while Davidson discusses the role Indians played in the early days of the UAE unfortunately they have been left out of modern developments. At the commercial level, expatriate Indians have been a very significant force in the overall development of the UAE. Second, Davidson wants to use quantity as an (almost) measure of quality. When he refers to the various public services available (notably hospitals and public schools) there are some questions about the quality of the services being provided, especially in some of the Emirates outside of Dubai and Abu Dhabi. But he does manage to capture and convey the dynamic and rapidly changing nature of the UAE.
8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of few available serious studies of the U.A.E. 7 Dec 2005
By Daniel Bond - Published on Amazon.com
As a researcher at a major New York financial firm I needed to quickly find information to help me begin to assess the risks of doing business in the U.A.E. Fortunately I came across a reference to this volume. I found it extremely useful for my work, providing me with substantial up-to-date information on the politics and economics of a country quite different from most I have studied. In particular, Dr. Davidson provided some answers to one of my initial questions about the U.A.E.--what holds this group of seven monarchies together? While the book could have benefited from more editing (it still reads like a doctoral dissertation)it is full of information and easy to use.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why no democracy? 31 Jan 2006
By Miss Arabia - Published on Amazon.com
This is a very well put together book, and after reading it all the way through I realised it's the first time I have been able to fully understand why democracy has not taken root and, in the western sense at least, is unlikely to take root in the near future. The book is also very useful for showing how the rulers have desperately tried to diversify their economic base, and although most of the statistics only go up to 2004, this is easily the best book I have seen of the development of a Gulf state.
6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Academic rigour 6 Jun 2005
By Said - Published on Amazon.com
Well researched, with balanced arguments. Useful for people who have no vested interests and an unbiased view of the country. Clearly written by someone who has gained a deep knowledge of the country and placed it in the global context.
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